Family

Day 29 – The Logistics of Baby Transpiration

The mission: You need to run some errands around town. The Bank, Target and the Grocery store. You don’t have anyone to watch the tiny human, so along he comes.

It goes down like this:

Step 1 – Make a game plan. Mentally map out your attack on the town. Working in a circle from the homebase out, just in case there’s a meltdown and you need to cut bait and retreat early.

Step 2 – Prep for the journey. “Tank up” the tiny human. Fresh diaper. Stock the diaper bag with emergency rations. Preferably time journey to fit within the 3 hour EASY schedule.

Step 3 – Lock and Load. Place tiny (heavy) human in carseat. Strap and secure. Grab diaper bag, shopping lists, reusable bags, Ergo carrier, water (Mama is always THIRSTY), wallet, cell phone, keys.

Step 4 – Launch. Get everything and everyone in the car.

Step 5 – Arrive at Destination #1. Baby is awake and alert. Unload stroller, grab Bank items, hook carseat into stroller. Approach bank. Open bank door, enter bank backwards – pulling stroller. Note: pulling stroller > pushing so you avoid the reach, pull and hold door dilemma. Make way to bank line. Rock stroller back and forth, responding to tiny human’s smiles and “goos.” Complete banking, while swapping babytalk with the teller. Exit bank with same pull stroller strategy.

Step 6 – Re-load and re-launch. Repeat beginning of Step 5 in reverse. Carseat into car. Stroller into trunk. Drive.

Step 7 – Arrive at Destination #2. Baby is awake and alert. Secure Ergo carrier. Insert baby. Grab shopping list. Make way to Target and locate a shopping cart. Select the loudest, most clunkly cart of the lot on the first attempt. Don’t recognize this until you’ve reached the point of no return. Attack store with focus and determination. No time for idle browsing and “tagnet” (target-magnet) phenomenon in which previously unneeded items make their way into your cart. Implement rocksway movement to keep baby content when stopping to consider a purchase. Check out. Doing the baby-wearing dip while leaning back so as not to disrupt the sleeping human strapped to your chest as you transfer items from your cart to the belt. Answer babyvitals questions with the checker. Name, Age, Sleeping pattern status.

Step 8 – Reload and relaunch. Transfer purchased goods to car. Return shopping cart. Remove sleeping tiny human from Ergo and reinsert into carseat. Secure. Drive.

Step 9 – Baby disposition pending, arrive at Destination #3. Secure Ergo. Insert sleeping baby. Grab shopping list and reusable bags. Make wiser (and silent) cart selection. Approach store in a methodical manner. Always poised for babymeltdown and subsequent cart abandonment.  Complete shopping. Repeat baby-wearing dip. Repeat babyvitals questions with checker and bagger.

Step 10 – Reload and set course for home. Transfer groceries. Return cart. Secure sleeping tiny human in carseat.

Step 11 – Arrive back at homebase. Remove carseat and groggy baby from vehicle. Set on kitchen counter. Silently pray tiny human can keep his cool just a little longer so you can unload car and get melting ice cream into the freezer. Make as few trips back and forth from car as possible. Load maximum amount of items onto person to lessen repeat trips.

Step 12 – Finish Strong. Unpack purchased goods at rapid pace. Plead with tiny human to hang in there for “just a minuet” while you fling frozen items anywhere they’ll fit.

Step 13 – Decompress. You did it! Another successful adventure out in the world. Feed tiny human and thank him for his patience and good behavior on the journey.

Family

Day 26 – Mama Thoughts

As a Mama I have the standard worries: Is he breathing!? Am I doing this right? Should I be doing more, less, or the same of ___?

I think that’s normal, and with each passing day I get a little more confident in some things, and I start to worry about a whole host of other things related to raising this tiny human. Big picture stuff.

Here’s a few that rattle around in my head on any given day:

Bullying

As a kid I remember being picked on. It was not cool to be the tall girl with glasses. Kids can be so mean about little things, and even things you might not be self-conscious about start to make you feel awkward. When I was growing up, the taunting stopped when you left school. But not anymore. It’s online, in social media, in text messages and blogs. Do I worry Merfbaby might be picked on? Yes, of course. But, more than that I fear he could be the one doing the picking, or standing by watching another kid be on the receiving end of a bully’s harsh words. I can’t protect him from everything, but I’m determined to give him solid life tools.

Tech Overload 

Merfman and I love people watching, next to napping it’s probably our favorite hobby. It’s so interesting to sit back and watch the world spin, and see how other people are doing life. One constant observation is the rarity of face to face social interaction. We were at dinner a few months ago, and we noticed the family sitting at a table near us waiting for their food. Dad was nose-to-screen with his smart phone. Older brother transfixed with a gaming-thingy. Younger brother glued to a tech pad. And Mom was staring off, looking sad. This scenario continued for a looong time, they never look up or said a word to each other.  I know Merfbaby will be far more familiar with technology during his childhood than either Merfman or I were, but I don’t want it to consume him. Merfman and I were both allowed to watch TV as kids, and some shows were off limits, same with video games. It’s part of our culture, I can’t stop it but we can help him to learn self-control. The dinner table is for eating and connecting, face to face. Sure, Merfman and I have jobs where we’re with our phones 24/7 but we try to make each other a priority when we’re eating. Same goes for Merfbaby.

Financial Responsibility 

Since we’re living like no one else right now, so we can really live like no one else later, we’re working hard to change our family tree. There’s a saying that you should leave your kids enough money to do something, but not too much money to do nothing. We want him to learn the value of money, and learn from our financial missteps. In our cashless and debt heavy society we want him to have peace and freedom with money. Understanding that it’s a blessing and we have to use it wisely.

Education

I was a “good” student. Not because my parent’s forced me to be, or put crazy expectations down. Mostly because I wanted to do well in school. It didn’t always come easy, but I worked hard. I have no idea what kind of student Merfbaby will be, and I don’t know how he’s going to be educated yet. Maybe homeschool? Maybe co-op? Maybe public? Private? We’ll take that as it comes, but I do wonder about his learning journey. I want him to have a healthy blend of traditional education and hands on experience. Call me hippie-mama but I’d love to spend a few months traveling the US teaching him US history hands on, like actually going to the places you read about in the books. Nuts maybe, but probably pretty awesome too.

Faith

This is a big one. Merfman and I are believers, and we pray Merfbaby follows our example and shares our beliefs. I won’t get too high on my soapbox, but the meat of it is this: the world is hard and scary and crazy. It’s probably going to keep heading that direction, right? I have my faith, and the world still freaks me out and makes me sad. But, life would be so much harder NOT having my hope in God. Life is short, knowing there’s a point and a plan to all of this stuff helps.

Character Building

I guess this sort of goes with the faith thing. I want to raise a human that’s good, and kind, and compassionate. HOW do you do that? I can’t make him be something. I just have to set out the breadcrumbs and pray he follows them, right?

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See what I mean, big picture stuff. This is where I think and pray, doing the best I can to be a good example of life for my little tiny human sponge. Woosh, no pressure, right?

Family

Day 21 – Growing Up on the Interwebs

Back in the day our parents did this crazy ritual where they took photos of us, with a film camera and then got the photos DEVELOPED. Nuts!

And sometimes they took those photos and put them into these things call scrapbooks. Say, wha?!

I know the art of printing photos and scrapbooking isn’t lost – but the internet has made it a rarity.

Taking and sharing photos has never been easier. Hello, smartphones, Instagram and Facebook. On that note, I’m falling more out of love with Facebook and more in love with Instagram daily. Why? Well, because as much as I love you FB friends, I really don’t care to hear about what sort of sandwich bread you used for lunch or what a terriblehorriblenogoodverybad day you’re having. Sorry. I do LOVE to see your engagements, pregnancy announcements, promotions, fist time homeownership’s, wedding albums and BABIES. Yea, I’m totally that Mama. And maybe you don’t love seeing tiny humans all up in your newsfeed. I get that too.

But it makes me wonder…soon there will be an entire generation that’s had their whole lives documented for the world to see – without them giving  their consent. 

We’ve all heard the theory, if it isn’t Facebook “official” did it really happen?

Do we need to post every single moment of our lives for the masses to view? Probably not. Do I want to share images of my son’s life with the people I love? Of course.

But, where’s the line? How much is too much? Is he going to be upset that I did this:

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I hope not. I hope he chuckles at it, and thinks his little grumpybaby face is funny.

Privacy on the internet is a whole ‘nother bag of potatoes. But you can be sure that he won’t be the only kid in his elementary class with his sonogram out there floating around.

Merfbaby

#generationZproblems